Suddenly he was there on TV. He who had almost killed her when she was 15 years old.
Then she decided to call him.
The man Trine Kristoffersen (53) was interviewed by Anne Grosvold in NRK’s ”Summer Open” did not fit at all with the picture she had had of him for over 20 years.
– Pattern. That’s the picture I had of him. A kind of monster image, she says.
But this Arild Knutsen (51) who now stood in the studio and talked about the street magazine = Oslo and the treatment of drug addicts looked friendly.
March 22, 1983 is a date none of them will forget.
In the program “Our little country”, the two tell about the dramatic episode and how it affected their lives.
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Trine admits that she was probably a bit of a tough girl in her teens. In the Stovner district on the eastern edge of Oslo, the environment could be rough.
– I looked around for everything that was exciting. Felt immortal. Never thought that something could be dangerous, she says.
– It’s a little strange to think about, I notice.
Because after that day in 1983, the confident and tough girl was gone.
The fateful day
Trine was not really part of the quarrel that ended so catastrophically.
But the scuffle that Tuesday between her and her two girlfriends on the one hand and the two boys on the other gradually developed into a pure power struggle between Trine and the 14-year-old she would only later learn was named Arild.
Outside the blocks on Stovner, they wanted to show that they stood up for their friends – and what they thought was right. Both came with harsh threats against the other.
Suddenly the other boy runs to get a hunting knife. He gives it to Arild.
Exactly what happens after that is still a bit unclear. But the knife that Arild holds in her hand hits Trine in the stomach with such great force that one of the ribs goes across.
Trine breaks down. The pain in the abdomen is almost unbearable.
Fear of death
Trine is critically injured and is being sent to Ullevaal Hospital. There she is operated on. Trine survives, but life is never the same.
– I was scared of everything. Such fear of death, says Trine.
In particular, she was afraid to meet the boy, whom she now knew was named Arild.
– If I heard his name, I was sick.
Trine could have sudden panic attacks.
– One day I could not breathe. It came like lightning from clear skies, I had no oxygen.
Trine and her family move from Stovner to get away.
At night she has nightmares. It’s always the same thing that happens. Suddenly someone appears who attacks her with a knife – and she has to fight for her life.
– I gyve loose to take out that knife and I throw it as far away as I can. But no matter how hard I throw, the knife lands right nearby, so they get it all the time. Again and again. It’s absolutely awful, says Trine.
– I have had that dream for many, many years.
The years go by. But the trauma does not go away.
– I struggled a lot with myself, I struggled a lot with my self-image. At that stab, my whole body disappeared. How I looked at myself, says Trine.
– That was the fear.
It’s the summer of 2005. It’s been 22 years since she last saw him. But now the boy from that time is here in her living room, via the TV screen.
On TV, Arild says that he has had drug problems, but that he is now drug-free and works with the street magazine = Oslo.
– Suddenly he reappears. He who has had so much to do with my life, with how my life turned out, says Trine.
– Then he’s just a guy on TV.
The monster picture she has always had of him does not match the man who is on TV.
– I saw he was involved in other people, that he burned for a cause.
She thinks about, for a long time. But in the end, Trine decides to contact Arild. Maybe a meeting with him can help her.
She calls, and not many days later the two sit face to face in a café. Then it has been 22 years since that fateful day.
– Seeing him in front of me, after the picture I have had of him, it was completely strange, says Trine.
– He is very pale and looks very sad. I almost felt I had to comfort him.
Trine wished they had had this chat many years earlier. For as she sat there face to face with the man she had feared for many years, it was as if the fear she had shared in her body disappeared.
– I was surprised. I had expected that it would be a process that would take time before one would feel better. But what was so strange is that the picture I had of him disappeared in a second.
– It was just so repairing, says Trine.
Arild also wished they had had that chat many years earlier.
– We were two people who just wished each other well, but who had once met in such a terrible bargain episode that had done so much with us, he says.
– We were just two stupid young people, says Trine.
Upheaval in life
It has been over ten years since they met then. But they still keep in touch. Now they are sitting on a bench in Oslo and updating each other on the latest news.
Their lives have changed completely.
– It was a big upheaval in life, it meant a lot to both of them, says Arild.
– I have never been so relieved in my whole life, as I was during that chat there, says Trine.
She takes a long break.
– That meeting with Arild is one of the best things that has actually happened to me.
Watch “Our little country” on TV 2 Sumo